Une poule sur un mur…

Une poule sur un mur
Qui picore du grain dur
Picoti, picota
Lève la queue et puis s’en va !

ewn-uh poo-luh sewr uh MEWR
kee pee-ko-ruh dew paa DEWR
pee-ko-TEE, pee-ko-TAH,
lev lah KUH ay pwee sah VAH.

Click below to hear this pronounced!  

A hen on a wall
Who is pecking hard grain
Picky, pecky,
Lifts her tail and then goes away.

In honor of the chickens we had in yesterday’s post, here is another French counting-out rhyme for you. The words in the third line, of course, are nonsense syllables, such as seem to be common in these rhymes  in many languages.

Interestingly, there are at least two words for the verb to peck: picorer and picoter. So it would not be in the least surprising to hear a variant of this where the second line would read, Qui picote du grain dur. Likewise, it should come as no surprise that the nonsense syllables incorporate the /p-c-t/ sound pattern instead of the /p-c-r/ pattern.

And that’s pretty much all I have to say about this, except that the last line of a counting-out rhyme often seems to make reference to going away, letting go, or disappearing, at least when the words make any sense at all (see this previous post…)!


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